Findings on happiness in Ormel (1980): study NL 1970

Author(s)Ormel, J.
TitleMoeite met Leven of een Moeilijk Leven. (Difficulties with Living or a Difficult Life).
SourceKonstapel, 1980, Groningen, Netherlands
Public15-60 aged, general public, followed 12 month, The Netherlands, 1967-77
Last assesment1977
 T1:1970, T2:1976, T3:1977
Survey nameNot available
SampleNot available
 Ss were selected from the 1970 panel "Medische Consumptie" (medical consumption), a national survey in the Netherlands. From this panel were discarded Ss living in 4 provincies and those under 15 or over 60 of age, resulting in 716 names. A probability sample from those names resulted in 232 possible respondents. In order to obtain a high amount of neurotic Ss, those of the remaining 484 Ss having a high score on neurosticism were added to the sample. This resulted in 363 Ss of which 296 fully participated.
Respondents N =296
Non Response18%
AssesmentInterview: face-to-face
 Structured interview
Happiness measure(s) used
Full textSelfreport on 8 questions: " In the past few weeks did you ever feel.....?" A Pleased about having accomplished something B Upset because someone critized you C Proud because someone complimented you one something you had done D That things are going your way E So restless you couldn't sit long in a chair F Unhappy or depressed G Particularly interested in something H Lonely and remote from other people Response options: 0 not at all 1 sometimes 2 often 3 very often Scoring: a = 0..........d = 3 Summation: Positive Affect Score (PAS): summed scores on A, C, D, G Negative Affect Score (NAS): summed scores on B, E, F, H Affect Balance Score (ABS): PAS minus NAS Name: Bradburn's Affect Balance Scale (variant)
Author's labelAffect balance
Error estimatesT2: _ =.59, T3: _=.63
Finding used in
nation ranks
 On original range 0 - 12On range 0 - 10
Standard deviation

Correlational findings

Author's labelSubject Code
Subject description
Adequacy of copingC11ab03bCoping-success rating by others
Change in burdens in the last year (lowering)L06aa02Change in life-event burden
Change in happinessH04ab02aChange over life time
Chronological ageA04abCurrent age (in years)
Chronological ageH04ab01aRecent happiness (< 1 year ago), also classified as above ↑
Closed attitudeP05ccOpen
Closed attitudeI06ac03Response tendencies, also classified as above ↑
Community sizeL14aa01Earlier community size
Complaints about mental healthH13aa01Earlier mental health
Complaints about physical healthH14aa01Earlier physical health
Complaints about physical healthH14aa03Later physical health, also classified as above ↑
Complaints about physical healthH14ab02cNumber of health complaints, also classified as above ↑
Denial of illnessH14af02Denial of illness
Dissatisfaction with societyA06aaDevelopment of anomy
Dissatisfaction with societyN02ac01Satisfaction with moral climate , also classified as above ↑
Earlier community sizeL16aa01Earlier residence
Inclination to answer positivelyP05ahApproval seeking
Inclination to answer positivelyP02ab02Earlier tendency to agree, also classified as above ↑
Inclination to answer positivelyI06ac03Response tendencies, also classified as above ↑
IncomeI01abCurrent income level (unspecified)
IncomeI01aa03aLater level of income, also classified as above ↑
Internal controlP02ab16Earlier inner-control
Internal controlP05bpInner locus of control, also classified as above ↑
Interpreting symptoms as illnessH14af03Conceptions of illness and healing
Intimacy between partnersM03ab02Intimacy with spouse
Level of educationE01ab02Level of school-education
Life-QualityL06ab01dSummed life-events: weighted in context
Living aloneH20ab01Living alone or not
Male sexG01aaSex (male vs female)
Negative affectsM12aa01Earlier mood-pattern
Negative affectsM12aa03Later mood-pattern, also classified as above ↑
NeuroticismH15aa01Earlier psycho-somatic complaints
Past happinessH04ab01bPast happiness ( 1 to 10 years ago)
Positive affectsH04ab01aRecent happiness (< 1 year ago)
Psycho-social burdensP14aa01bActual earlier problems (observed by follow-up)
Psycho-social burdensP14ab01Amount of problems perceived, also classified as above ↑
Psycho-social burdensL04ag01Life-stress inventories, also classified as above ↑
Readiness to consult a doctorH17ad01Trust in medical professionals
Received social supportS10ab01Amount of current support received
Received social supportS10aa01Earlier support received, also classified as above ↑
Self esteemS02aa01Earlier self-image
Taking action on symptoms of illnessH12acCurrent medical consumption
Tolerance degreeC11ab01Current coping-style
Tolerance degreeP05cu01Degree of self-disclosure, also classified as above ↑
Tolerance degreeP02ab25Earlier self-disclosing, also classified as above ↑
Traumatic childhood experiencesL06aa01aBurden of earlier life-events
UnemploymentE02abCurrent employment status
UnemploymentE02aa01Earlier (un)employment, also classified as above ↑
Unhappy childhoodH04aa01bIn specific periods in the past
Urban livingL14ab02bRural vs urban dwelling